Pet food retailer Heads Up for Tails India raises funding

Heads Up for Tails, one of India’s largest pet product retailers, is seeking additional funding as it expands, including the launch of a vegan pet food.

Courtesy of Heads Up for Tails
Courtesy of Heads Up for Tails

Heads Up for Tails (HUFT), one of India’s largest online and brick-and-mortar pet care product retailers, recently made announcements regarding its funding status. Founded in 2008, the startup was seeking up to US$50-$70 million from investors, including private equity firm KKR. However, the deal fell through due to a mismatch in valuation expectations.

HUFT now expects to raise US$25 million from KKR, with an additional US$10-$15 million coming from existing investors, namely Sequoia Capital and Verlinvest SA. The company had previously raised US$37 million in 2021 through Series A funding from these existing investors.

In an assessment of its 2022 financials, per Entrackr, the company reported an operating revenue of US$15.1 million, up 86% from the previous year. Further, the company reported its total expenses as US$16.8 million, up 92% from the previous year. The company noted that 60% of its expenditures related to cost of materials, which rose 130% over the fiscal year and resulted in the company closing the financial year with a loss of US$1.7 million.

Still expanding, launching vegan pet food

Amid the funding efforts, HUFT is continuing its expansion plans, with 65 stores and 35 pet spas across 12 Indian cities already. More than 60% of the company’s revenue comes from its stores, with the rest coming from its online presence.

Using an omnichannel approach, the company is a one-stop shop for all pet care needs, it says. With more than 5,000 products available through its online and in-store presence, HUFT is looking to innovate in the diversifying Indian pet food market.

To that end, the company is also exclusively launching a vegan Canadian pet food, Nature’s Hug, on its platform in India. The brand is available both online and in stores across India and provides a meat- and allergen-free diet for pets with sensitivity issues. Globally, vegan pet food is trending up, with expectations for the next decade putting it at a US$31 billion market by 2029, per Data Bridge Market Research.

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